I need to download an entire Gmail account such that it's in a format that's friendly for importation / upload into a Dovecot server. What's the right way to proceed with this so as to not only download all messages + attachments, but also to retain any existing "folder" structure?

  • This question was bumped by Community User. I’m voting to close this question because it's too broad. It might need to be split in two questions, one about the requirements of Dovecot server which might not be on topic on Web Applications if it's not a web application and another question about how to export / migrate data from Gmail but this question should be based on the options supported by the Dovecot server. Commented Sep 29, 2023 at 4:40

1 Answer 1


You can refer to the official pages on how to Export your data from Gmail
as well as How to download your Google data, where you will find complete instructions on how to complete your export.

You can also follow instructions from the Migration from Gmail to Dovecot wiki page.

  • 1
    So this is good info, thanks, but what about an intermediate step? For example, I'd like to go from Gmail to file to Dovecot in a paced fashion vs immediately importing into Dovecot. This is more of a "backup and then decide" route where once could back up Gmail and then even perhaps keep sync'ing it to a backup for some days or weeks before pulling the trigger on the file upload to the new service provider like Dovecot...
    – ylluminate
    Commented Jan 10, 2021 at 6:30
  • What would "an intermediate step" or "paced fashion" be? Do you mean syncing using IMAP or POP3 over a prolonged period of time after the export? Sorry but I lost you there. Maybe you would be better helped over at serverfault/dovecot/gmail. In any case since "this is good info" you could consider accepting and even upvoting the answer so others can benefit as well. Commented Jan 10, 2021 at 7:41
  • Well, I mean I want to do something like: gmail-download backup.file then later dovecot-upload backup.file
    – ylluminate
    Commented Jan 10, 2021 at 8:16

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.